ORNAMENT Volume 37 No. 3

Holly Lee. On Becoming an Artist
Randy Stromsoe. Luscious Materiality
Chris Triola. Made in Michigan
Vintage Chinese Glass. Toggles, Archers' Rings and More
Rob Jackson. A Passion For Discarded Beauty
Fashion Arts. Patrick Kelly
Ethnographic Arts. Visions From the Forests
Retrospective. Charles James
Conference. Corning Glass Symposium
Jewelry Arts. The Donna Schneier Collection


Nestled among fields and farms in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, some sixty miles west of Philadelphia, are the home and studios of Holly and Cliff Lee. Since 1992, this dynamic pair of craft artists—she a maker of fine jewelry, he a highly respected potter—have lived here in a nineteenth-century farmhouse and worked out of its 4,500-square-foot barn, both of which they have painstakingly fashioned into spaces that fit their needs, and their artistic and aesthetic sensibilities.


For more than four decades, California artist Randy Stromsoe has created seductive, exquisitely handformed jewelry that demonstrates his modernist aesthetic of elemental forms, fluid geometries and formal elegance. Stromsoe’s designs arise from his vast knowledge of jewelry traditions and from learning what his hands and tools can do in unison.


Made in Michigan fits Chris Triola very well. Her sturdy and beautiful textiles exemplify Michigan’s enduring creative and entrepreneurial tradition, especially given the constant challenges her home state has faced. Triola receives renewed inspiration in the beautiful wonderland that can be found in the fields, woods and meadows surrounded by the Great Lakes. With the trained eye of a painter, the natural world of Michigan is the basis for her fabric designs and, as she says, there she is especially drawn to the simple “linear patterns in unusual places where some would not look: in mud, fire, weeds, tiny pieces of discarded leaves and bark, window frost.”


When a country like the People’s Republic of China is so rich in archaeological, ethnographic and vintage art, it is easy for a medium like glass to be overlooked. Within the last few decades, both foreign and Chinese researchers have remedied this oversight and begun studying its ancient and some of the vintage glass ornaments.


Rob Jackson often keeps his eyes focused on the ground, searching for old nails, “road metal,” or any scrap of iron or steel with an intriguing surface texture. He transforms this debris into fine jewelry, presenting his precious bits of detritus as many jewelers present costly gemstones.